Michele Connors, Realtor Broker  ABR CRS CNHS

Selling Your Home - Negotiating

Is there a secret to good negotiating?

Yes, having a good listing agent willing to go the extra mile by encouraging offers and ultimately working them out in your favor .. Think Michele.      
There are several cardinal rules to negotiating effectively. One is do your homework, and learn as much about the buyer as you can. Do not let emotion enter the deal. Know the market, active / pending and sold in the last 8 months. Michele has a keen insight to the market and handling negotiations. Her ability to communicate effectively on behalf of her sellers with a buyers agent makes working with Michele effective...you want her in your corner when working out the terms of an offer.

What contingencies should be put in an offer?

Most offers include a due diligence period ( for buyer to obtain inspections, appraisals etc)  A buyer could forfeit his or her earnest money deposit under certain circumstances, such as backing out of the deal for a reason not stipulated in the contract. They also can put down a due diligence fee that goes directly to seller. The purchase contract must include the sellers responsibilities, such things as passing clear title, maintaining the property in its present condition until closing and making any agreed-upon repairs to the property. Being upfront at time of listing is key. Know your pay off amount if you have a mortgage.

How is the price set?

It's very important to price your home according to current market conditions. Because the real estate market is continually changing, and market fluctuations have an effect on property values, it's imperative to select your list price based on the most recent comparable sales in your neighborhood. A so-called comparative market analysis provides the background data upon which to base your list-price decision. When you prepare to sell and are interviewing agents, study each agent's comparable sales report (the data should be no more than three months old). If all agents agree on a price range for your home, go with the consensus. Watch out for an agent whose opinion of value is considerably higher than the others. You may be chasing the market or helping other homes sell if you are "over priced" You get one chance for a first impression.

Is a low offer a good idea?
While your low offer in a normal market might be rejected immediately, in a buyer's market a motivated seller will either accept or make a counteroffer. Full-price offers or above are more likely to be accepted by the seller. But there are other considerations involved:
* Is the offer contingent upon anything, such as the sale of the buyer's current house? If so, a low offer, even at full price, may not be as attractive as an offer without that condition.
* Is the offer made on the house as is, or does the buyer want the seller to make some repairs or lower the price instead?
* Is the offer all cash, meaning the buyer has waived the financing contingency? If so, then an offer at less than the asking price may be more attractive to the seller than a full-price offer with a financing contingency.

Each sale is unique to the sellers needs and buyers needs.. the terms on the offer can always be discussed and countered. With Michele as your listing agent, she is your advisor and often can come up with options and ideas to negotiate a sale.

What is the best time to sell your house?

There is no "best" time to sell per se. Selling a house depends on supply, demand and other economic factors. But the time of year in which you choose to sell can make a difference both in the amount of time it takes to sell your home and in the ultimate selling price. Weather conditions are less of a consideration in more temperate climates, but most of the time, the real estate market picks up as early as February, with the strongest selling season usually lasting through May and June. With the onset of summer, the market slows. July is often the slowest month for real estate sales due to a strong spring market putting possible upward pressure on interest rates. Also, many prospective home buyers and their agents take vacations during mid-summer. Following the summer slowdown, real estate sales activity tends to pick up for a second, although less vigorous, fall market, which usually lasts into November when the market slows again as buyers and sellers turn their attention to the holidays. If this makes you wonder if you should take your home off the market for the holidays, consider the advice of veteran agents: You are always more likely to sell your house if it is available to show to prospective buyers continuously.

Michele Connors
Michele Connors
Broker Realtor, Advisor
401 W 1st St Greenville NC 27858